Frontier Theory in UNC-COP Relations

By Stephen Kangal
January 13, 2010
Trinidad and Tobago News Blog
www.trinidadandtobagonews.com/blog

Kamla Persad-BissessarIt must be made patently clear that the COP is predominantly, but not exclusively, a political derivative of the UNC resulting from the conflict of the contending forces of disintegration/one-manship that is in the DNA of the latter. Accordingly, since the inception of the COP at the Center of Excellence on 10 September 2006, there has not yet emerged or negotiated and/or developed a clear and defining boundary or demarcation line that separates the two political organizations. There is a huge zone of overlapping loyalties. Those lines of demarcation at the individual popular membership level can be considered to be more imaginary than real.

This absence of an exclusive fence in COP-UNC interface is the prescription of geography, ethnicity, laws of recency, indenture-ship and ideology. Editorial space does not permit a full analysis of these determining factors.

On the other hand, what distinguishes or that which configures and determines the nature, tenour and scope of the current informal membership relations between these two political parties that are struggling to define, sever the umbilical chord and delimit their own separate political/ideological identities is what has emerged as the frontier theory. This is a new concept in the progressive development of inter-party political behaviour in T&T. It has in fact given sustenance to a new political genre of “dual citizenship” that first manifested itself and produced the uncertainties, highly migratory patterns and unpredictability of the results of the 2007 elections.

This frontier concept or overlapping zone of interaction/common “passport” is the antithesis of the boundary concept that Kelvin Ramnath tried to establish by his foolish request for the COP membership list. Trafficking in COP-UNC electoral politics has been conducted along this common market-place/frontier of confluence since 2007. It is here that the two tectonic plates are colliding/embracing and producing unconventional seismic aberrations and challenges that must be rationalized and given credence.

The frontier theory has now become even more clearly established, visible, openly acknowledged on platforms and operational in the build-up to the January 24 internal elections of the UNC. The COP “dual nationalities” hold the balance of power in these elections. A large cadre of these “dual nationalities” believes that Kamla Persad-Bissessar represents the best hope for the achievement of a viable and sustainable PNM-defeating and good-governance-delivering accommodation with the COP. The lines of demarcation have become even more blurred and the density of the frontier more populated.

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2 Responses to “Frontier Theory in UNC-COP Relations”


  • If Panday is truly interested in unity, he would not have had any issues with COP (UNC) members returning to the UNC-A to elect a leader of their choice, but maybe the man has forgotten that these are in fact rank and file UNC members who had no choice but to move to COP because of the UNC’s failure to attract the support to become a credible contender for government under the leadership of Panday. Panday has fallen so deep, that he himself would never be able to dig himself out of the pit he has descended into. It is unfortunate for such an individual to go out like this, rather than someone who has contributed greatly to the politics f this country, there is no other option but to force him out via a resounding defeat in the UNC’s internal election.

  • Fine article , Mr. K. Madame Kamla Persad-Bissessar, is certainly a breath of fresh air in the ordinarily predictable T&T politics, and hopefully in time she too can blossom so as to make a significant difference .As much as I understand the shrewd calculations by the likes of a Madame KP – Bissesar, Ilook on with some curiosity at this soft peddling attack on the wise old Bengal Tiger Uncle Panday. It is well known that straw grasping drowning men can be very dangerous in their efforts to pull anyone within their reach under.
    I have said it to Mr Rowley the whimpering Rottweiler in his legendary contentious political dalliances with Mr Manning , and I am going to say it again as part of by free public service to Madame P, “you cannot be half pregnant,”good folks.The voters no matter how dumb you think they are ,can decipher /read you loud and clear, even as you put up for public consumption a pointless fake- can we get along – affectionate display.
    The irony of the behavior of someone like Mr Panday never cease to amaze me. Here is someone you profess to be so much in love with the subtle sensibilities of his British master,s who also educated him , but yet conveniently refuses to adopt one of the few adorable habits that they have given the world as an example of political maturity , and suaveness. Most British MP worth his or her salt would resign quickly from public office , the moment any cloud of suspicion or question of impropriety lurks overhead- whether imagined or true.
    Mr P in contrast, it seems would prefer to hold on to power indefinitely , even if such actions are against the best interest of his party, constituency, and the nation as a whole. There is absolutely no way that he has the acumen to lead the UNC victorious to the polls ever again , and he knows it, and so does his advisers.
    It is almost like asking Don Quarry , Hasley Crawford , or Wendell Mottley to try and beat Ussain Bolt , Thompson or any of our other fine local running brads in a race presently.
    Some would seem to think that Mr P’s strategy is a desperate one aimed at keeping himself out of prison for as long as he can, as he place himself on the pedestal as a lifetime victim .
    Others would go so far as to say this is similar to the typical undemocratic Third world political crook or thug that choose to hide behind power , since it serves as a shield from prosecution for past known atrocities.
    Since I do not have jail clothes , I’ll not subscribe, one way or the other to any such cynical views , and would walk the fence instead, hmmm? Talk about half pregnant! But I ‘ain’t’ running for office, is my response .

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